Influence of Maternal Health Education Delivered Through Community Health Referral Project on Antenatal Care Attendance: A Focus on Mirihini and Midoina Communities of Kilifi County, Kenya
Shibonje, Janet Mukoshi
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Timely delivery of effective, safe, quality and personal services is a key pillar of health system strengthening. A Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (MNeCH) Project was initiated by the Ministry of Health and World Vision Kenya in Bamba Division, Kilifi County. The project’s goal was to strengthen health systems at the facility and community levels, including Antenatal Care (ANC). One of the strategies used by the project to achieve its goal was to strengthen community health referral system. The objectives of the study were 1) to determine whether providing maternal health education to pregnant women had any influence on ANC attendance in the intervention and control communities and 2) to determine whether issuing referral advice forms to patients has any influence on ANC attendance in the intervention and control communities. This study adopted the static group control design to assess the influence of community health referral practices on ANC attendance in Mirihini, the intervention community in Bamba and Midoina the control community. Primary data were sourced from 246 mothers of children aged below 2 years, parents of children aged 2 to 4 years, as well as Community Health Volunteers (CHVs). Quantitative analysis yielded descriptive statistics and cross-tabulations with Chi-square (χ2 ) tests. Qualitative data were transcribed, described and analyzed systematically to reveal themes and patterns. Maternal health education: In Mirihini, there was no significant association between providing maternal health education on the ideal number of ANC visits and women’s achievement of optimal ANC attendance (χ2 = 1.423, df=1 & a ρ-value = 0.233). In Midoina, a significant relationship between the two aspects was obtained (χ2 = 3.109, df = 1 & ρ-value = 0.078. Referral documentation: In Mirihini, issuing referral documents to pregnant women was significantly associated with women’s achievement of optimal ANC attendance (χ2 = 8.308, df =1 & ρ-value = 0.004). In Midoina, there was no significant association between two aspects (χ2 = 0.823, df = 1 & ρ-value = 0.185). The study recommends the need for: CHVs to deliver more information to support care-seeking behavior change; project officers to strengthen supervisory support to CHVs by engaging with MoH to provide reporting materials and ensure consistency of monthly review meetings.
International Journal of Scientific and Research Publications